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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Hamas, Abbas's PLO Announce Reconciliation Agreement: Peace Process Now Totally DEAD


If there were any remote signs of life in the Israel/Palestinian peace talks, they died today with the announcement of a reconciliation agreement between terrorist group Hamas, and the "moderate" terrorists of Fatah who run the PLO.

The two groups agreed on Wednesday to implement a unity pact, both sides announced in a joint news conference:

The move envisions forming a unity government within five weeks and holding national elections six months after a vote of confidence by the Palestinian parliament.

Palestinians have long hoped for a healing of the political rift between the PLO and militant Hamas, which won a Palestinian election in 2006 and seized control of the Gaza Strip from forces loyal to Western-backed Abbas in 2007.

But Arab-brokered unity pacts reached between the two sides have yet to be implemented, leaving many Palestinians skeptical about their leaders' reconciliation pledges.

"This is the good news we tell our people: the era of division is over," Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh told Palestinian reporters to loud applause.
While both Fatah and Hamas call for the destruction of Israel, Hamas is more overt in it's threats making them in all languages and is considered a terrorist group even by the appeasement-prone European Union. Fatah, on the other hand is considered "moderate" because its call for the destruction of Israel are only made in Arabic.

Understandably, earlier this week Israeli PM Netanyahu said he would not negotiate with a government which includes Hamas unless it renounces violence and terrorism (which is as likely as Nancy Pelosi calling for the repeal of Obamacare).

Newsbusted: Obama Announces He Will Decide on Keystone (As Soon As Cubs Win World Series)

Despite the fact that it will stimulate the economy, and that every study has shown it will not hurt the environment, President Obama has been avoiding giving a final answer about the Keystone Pipeline. As part of a Good Friday news dump, we learned that once again the administration is delaying giving a final answer whether or not he will approve this economic stimulus. They didn't even say when they will have an answer--until now.  According to Newsbusted Anchor Jodie Miller (see video below) we learn that the President promises an answer when the Chicago Cubs win the World Series, or the NY Jets win the Super Bowl (what ever comes second).

Other news items covered in the latest installment of Newsbusted the weekly  faux news feature from Newsbusters.org (embedded below) include; how the President made children cry at the White House Easter Egg hunt; MSNBC's proof that the IRS Scandal was bogus; why Jay Carney is so tired;  and much, much, more.

Please make sure you watch the video below because something bad always happens to the people who don't. Last week President Obama forgot to press play and Putin continued to make him a laughing stock. So if you don't want to become a world-wide laughing stock, you better press play.

Oh and if you cannot see the video player below please click here

IRS Gave Bonuses To Employees Who Didn't Pay Their Taxes

If you forget to pay taxes the IRS will be on your back very quickly, If are part of a conservative group the IRS will target you.  But if you work for the IRS and you owe taxes you get a bonus.  According to the IRS IG (Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration), IRS employees who had been disciplined for tax and conduct issues were nonetheless rewarded with monetary awards or time off, according to a watchdog report released yesterday (embedded below).

"While not prohibited, providing awards to employees who have been disciplined for failing to pay federal taxes appears to create a conflict with the IRS’s charge of ensuring the integrity of the system of tax administration,” Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration J. Russell George said.

The watchdog found that in the period from October 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012 over 2,800 employees who had been disciplined for conduct problems, including issues with federal tax compliance, had received over $2.8 million in monetary awards and over 27,000 hours in time-off awards.

The watchdog found that the more than 1,100 employees who had issues with tax compliance received more than $1 million in monetary awards and more than 10,000 hours in time-off awards.

The IRS said in a statement it has already developed a new policy linking conduct and performance bonuses for executives and senior level employees.
Of course there is that other question, like why the hell are government employees getting bonuses.
"Even without a formal policy in place over the past four years, the IRS has not issued awards to any executives that were subject to a disciplinary action," the IRS said in a statement. "We are also considering a similar policy for the entire IRS workforce, which would be subject to negotiations with the National Treasury Employees Union."

The IRS had about 100,000 workers during the period under review.

In the 2011 budget year, more than 70,000 IRS workers got cash bonuses totaling $92 million, the report said. In the 2012 budget year, nearly 68,000 workers got cash bonuses totaling $86 million.
So about 7 out of 10 IRS employees got a bonus.  A little high don't you think?
The report said the IRS considers prior conduct before awarding permanent pay increases. "However, IRS officials stated that the IRS generally does not consider conduct issues when administering other types of awards," the report said.

There are no government-wide policies on providing bonuses to employees with conduct issues, the report said. However, a 1998 law calls for removing IRS employees who are found to have intentionally committed certain acts of misconduct, including willful failure to pay federal taxes.

Tax compliance at the IRS is generally better than at other federal agencies.
Ladies and gentleman, another prime example of your tax dollars at work.

H/T Fox News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Dem Congressman on Obamacare: The Sh*t Is About To Hit The Fan

Speaking to Boston Herald Radio last week, Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA), who voted against warned that the Obamacare — well, you know — is about to “hit the fan.”

“There are parts of Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act, that were postponed because they are unpalatable. As these provisions come into effect, the administration thus far is saying, ‘Gee, we really can’t handle this right now so we’re going to delay it.’”

“These obligations keep piling up,” he continued. “Any individual with an individual healthcare plan that exceeds $10,200 is in a Cadillac plan situation. They’re going to have to pay — that employer, if they provide that, and many do today let alone in 2018 — will have to pay a 40 percent tax on the amount over the minimum established — excuse me, the maximum established under the Affordable Care Act.”

“That is a huge tax. It’s the first time in this country’s history that we have actually taxed health care,” Lynch said. “We used to treat it like food, that people would die without it. Well, we’re in a new day now.
Lynch went on to say that the 2014 election will be a disaster for the Democrats.
"We will lose seats in the House," the plain-talking South Boston Democrat said in Boston Herald Radio's studio yesterday, delivering a harsh diagnosis. "I am fairly certain of that based on the poll numbers that are coming out from the more experienced pollsters down there. And I think we may lose the Senate. I think that's a possibility if things continue to go the way they have been . . . primarily because of health care."
 One of the parts of Obamacare the Democrats have to worry about the most is if the Employer Mandate kicks in which may force up to 80 million Americans to find new health plans via the exchange. That is supposed to kick in next November.


H/T Hot Air

WAPOs Ignatius: John Kerry is Hurting Hilary's POTUS Chances

On Sunday's Face The Nation, the panel discussed Hillary Clinton's new book "Hard Choices" which is about her four years as Secretary of State. One panelist,Washington Post's David Ignatius, believes if Clinton is trying to use her tenure at State as a presidential spring board, it might backfire because of John Kerry's superior performance. "She can say, 'I was a solid Secretary, but compared to what Kerry’s attempted, she just wasn't really at that level.'"

According to the book's publisher, "Hard Choices" is an "inside account of the crises, choices and challenges that Clinton faced during her years as Secretary of State." Guest host Nora O' Donnell asked Ignatius how much the book's content foreshadows what Ms Clinton will do in the future. Ignatius answered with a warning:
Ignatius: We're assuming that she has that fire in her that her husband certainly had and still has. By publishing this book, and my sense talking to her, is that she really is going to tell us what it was like to be Secretary of State.

O'Donnell:
In Benghazi?

Ignatius:
She's putting already chips on that idea that she was a strong and effective leader of American foreign policy. She’s not just a former first lady, she’s not just a former senator, she made these hard choices. The problem with that is that if you compare Secretary Clinton, who I think was a solid Secretary of State, with her successor, John Kerry, you see what a dynamic Secretary of State, who didn't just make hard choices, went out there day after day trying to make diplomatic agreements, and that comparison, I think, won’t work in Secretary Clinton’s favor. She can say, I was a solid Secretary, but compared to what Kerry’s attempted, she just wasn't really at that level.